Torsten Richter becomes Ironman of the Maldives 2014, striving for the community

Torsten at IronMan MalaysiaMaldives.net.mv – Anantara and Naladhu Maldives Cluster General Manager Torsten Richter has successfully completed the IronMan Malaysia challenge, with a personal best time of 12:47 hrs and raising USD 10,000+ for a Maldivian cause.

“I worked with a personal trainer from the UK, who sent me my training schedule every week and provides online support and dietary recommendations. Some days it’s hard to motivate myself at 10.30pm to sit on a stationary bike and give the training session all my energy, but once I get into it the initial exhaustion of the day filters away,” says Torsten.

Living in paradise and training for a physically demanding IronMan race is no easy combination. 10:30 pm on the idyllic resort islands of Anantara Dhigu, Anantara Veli and Naladhu Maldives and most guests are enjoying their last glass of wine for the day or have already descended into a slumber of dreams. For Cluster General Manager Torsten Richter, it’s the time he enters the gym with an hour on the bicycle ahead of him, and at 5:00am his alarm wakes him for another gym session before his work day begins around 7:15 am.

Ironman challenges comprise a 3.8km swim, followed by a 180km bike ride and a 42.2km marathon run, all in within the cut-off time of 18 hours. Training for an Ironman race on a Maldivian island with no roads, just a 20m lap pool in addition to the ocean to swim and no wide and well paved roads to cycle along isn’t the most obvious choice location. Instead of measured tracks for running, Torsten run on sandy paths under tropical palm trees across the two of the three island resorts he manages.

“I participate in half-marathon races in Male and we organise an island run a couple of times a year at our resorts, just 35 minutes by speedboat from Male. Outside of the gym, Kayaking, swimming and running around the resorts on my day off, as well as  during the week before the guests wake up, keeps me fit and on track. It’s far from the ideal training conditions for the endurance challenge of an Ironman, but I’m not looking to be the first across the finishing line, I just want to complete it within my personal best time.”

Having previously completed Ironman challenges in Zurich in just over 13 hours, and Ironman 70.3 (half distances) in Phuket and Bintan, the Langkawi challenge on September 27th was the second such title Torsten accomplished, but the first in a tropical climate and still managing to beat his personal best time. Along the way, he has raised USD 10,000 to contribute towards new facilities for the Home for People with Special Needs on Guraidoo island.

 “The race itself was a personal goal I wanted to fulfill, but to be able to raise money and really make a difference to people’s lives in the process makes it all the more meaningful. The Home for People with Special Needs was brought to my attention originally through one of our associates, who was previously a patient there for a short while. After visiting the home I was inspired to do more to help and this was an obvious choice.”

To learn more about the Home for People with Special Needs from their website www.homeforspecialneeds.com

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